Weed is an American rock band from San Diego, California. Formed in 1994, the original line-up included John McCourt (guitars), Grant Gardner (vocals), Eric Reiff (bass), Corey Frausto (drums) and Mike Mosher (guitars).
The band emerged with a heavy and melodic alternative post grunge sound in spring of 1994 during an area when regional independent Southern California bands would share radio airplay and venues with major recording artist to capitalize on local popularity. Weed’s strong San Diego, Orange and Riverside county presence help them to achieve cult status during the mid-1990s.
Demo and Departures
Weed recorded their first demo EP “Reflect” in the summer of 1994. The low budget four song introductions quickly landed in the hands of local radio station Rock 102.1/105.3 where the song “Walls Have Ears” was receiving frequent airplay before the band had booked their first show. Shortly after the recording of “Reflect” the band parted with Mike Moser and would continue with four remaining members for the life of the band.
Music, Scene and Name
The mid-1990s So Cal music scene was a collection of mid-level bands who gained regional success Sprung Monkey, 13-A (formerly Asphalt Ballet), Psychotic Waltz, Voodoo, Natasha’s Ghost and Sandjacket where getting significant regional recognition while bands like P.O.D., Blink 182, Jewel and Korn ascended to national status. Shows would feature bands of multiple genres on the same bill fostering cross pollination of styles and fans. Weed’s loyal following was notorious for ensuring the band was supported as the headlining act, regardless of the bill status, by challenging venue owners to stock enough liquor to support the rowdy crowds. These draws combined with appearances at raves and radio promotional parties ensured Weed events transcended music. Although the name Weed was really intended to be the true definition of the word (unwanted plant in a garden), it took on new meaning through the lifestyle of the fan base. This was further promoted by the artwork of Rob Kimery a local artists, and Weed fan, who developed a series of logo’s and drawings embracing and adding to the legend of the scene. The popularity of the stickers and artwork also seemed to transcend the music, and were embraced by the counter-culture community independent of their knowledge of the band.
Studio Album Absurd:
In August 2006 Weed released their first and only full length studio album “Absurd.” Recorded at Studio West in Rancho Bernardo (San Diego) Absurd was a complex and dynamic collection of songs ranging in musical styles from rock, metal, grudge, alternative and thrash. The album was considered a progressive molding of styles with layered guitar work, intricate time signature changes, and diverse vocal arrangements. Weed was often considered art metal by musical peers and developed a reputation as a musician’s band. The dynamics and maturity of Absurd was an obvious contrast from Weed’s reputation in the scene which often caused the band to reconsider the long term use of the name.
Absurd only sold 2,000 original print copies, but has reached the 15,000 + range in free downloads, usually by word-of-mouth, and without any official sales or marketing efforts. This was enabled by the continuous airplay of songs “Walls Have Ears” (rerecorded for Absurd) and "Fishwrap". The album found its way into the hands of local college radio DJs where “Soaked” was appointed the song of choice. Soaked remained in college radio top 10 for four months.
Weed disbanded in 1997, but continues to have a strong SO Cal following.